It is once again Search For The Coldest time, when our friends at Coors Light® invite MCs from across the country to show what they’ve got for the chance to be crowned COLDEST MC. Naturally, our thoughts turn to last year’s winner, Felony Fame (aka Propane Fame), who made it to the top spot on the strength of his track Beastie Boy and, of course, his formidable lyrical skills and ability to deliver in a live performance. Since his win in 2012, Felony Fame has been on the rise and so we’re happy to name him this week’s OurStage Artist of the Week. Coming to us from North Carolina, by way of New Jersey, Fame has a distinct sound, with a gift for rhymes and compelling imagery backed by rich sonic textures and off-kilter beats that keep listeners hooked. No wonder he’s been featured in Hip Hop Weekly, Source, XXL, and on Cam’Ron‘s U.N. presents: Heat In Here Vol. 1 and Funk Master Flex‘s IFWT: Indie Vol. 1. Hear what it’s all about:
Think you’ve got skills like this? Enter the 2013 Search For The Coldest to win some amazing prizes, including $20k.
It’s been a long journey and a lot of hard work for North Carolina rapper Felony Fame since he left Newark, N.J. at a young age, but now that struggle is finally paying off. Fame was recently crowned the winner of the Coors Light “Search for the Coldest” Competition by judges DJ Drama and DJ Khaled (joined by host emcee Ice Cube), his versatility and originality overtaking several other competitors in the final round of freestyle battles. Now, the competition title, a DJ Drama-produced track, and a feature on Drama’s mixtape are helping this phenomenon become a sweeping sensation in the world of hip-hop. Felony Fame took a minute with us to talk about life before hip-hop, his alter-ego, and where he’s headed from here.
OS: You’re originally from Newark, N.J., how did you end up settling in North Carolina?
FF: I was really born in Newark, New Jersey. I ended up moving to North Carolina with my grandmother. I was raised by my grandmother, then my mother decided to move to North Carolina from Newark herself. So I was raised in North Carolina.
OS: Who are some other artists who you look up to and draw inspiration from? Did any of those artists influence the start of your career?
FF: Some of the artists I draw inspiration from, for me, definitely The Wu-Tang Clan, Biggie, you know, Notorious B.I.G. He was one of the first big artists I was in to. As a kid I used to want to perform his songs at talent shows, and things like that. Usher too, I did a couple of his songs too, that was in elementary school. Those are some of the artists I came up listening to and made me want to do music.
Many weeks ago, we teamed up with Coors Light® to find the country’s coldest MC, one who could spit rhymes like the frostiest winters, and after brutal competition through several different judging and voting rounds, New Jersey-bred rapper Felony Fame has been crowned the coldest of them all. Also known as Propane Fame, the Newark native moved to North Carolina at a young age and got an early start on his rapping career, soon becoming a rising phenomenon. After some tough times in NC, he returned to his roots in New Jersey to focus on developing as an artist, dedicating himself to the art of hip-hop. Fame describes his title by saying, I chose the name Felony Fame because I wanted to be known for making records, not having a criminal record. I have an alter ego, ˜Propane’ Fame, which showcases my versatility and creativity on records that are for any genre. Felony happens to be for the streets.
Fame put that versatility and creativity to the test on July 26 at the Coors Light® “Search For The Coldest“ finale, hosted by Ice Cube, where he competed with seven other finalists in a random freestyle battle to see who was really the coolest spitter in the game. With help from judges DJ Khaled and DJ Drama, the score was settled as Felony Fame held it down for the Charlotte, NC crew with his heavy hitting punchlines and unique use of metaphors. Now, he’ll cash in on $10,000 in studio time to build a track produced by DJ Drama, and will be featured on the upcoming Search For the Coldest Mixtape, presented by Drama himself. Congratulations to DL, Chris Akinyemi, Tarik Trotter, The Lyrical Maze, KOVE, Lois LS Lane, and Aquil for making it to the finals in NYC.